New TLDs

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A growing number of major brands are seriously leveraging their new TLDs, including .BNPPARIBAS, .CERN, .ABBOTT, .MONASH (and many others).

New TLDs / Recently Commented

Two-Thirds of All Domain Names are Hosted in the United States

There are currently more than 77 million generic top-level domain (gTLD) names in the world (counting .com, .net, .org, .info and .biz domain names). 67.23 percent of these are hosted in the United States, which corresponds to 52,277,677 domain names, making it by far the most dominant country on the Internet. The United States has almost twelve times as many domain names as Germany in second place. more

Chinese .CN Domain Name Sale Breaks Record at Over $160K

A sale of Chinese Internet domain names netted more than $160,000 on Friday in what organizers said was the biggest such auction yet in the computer-crazy country.

A pair of sites named for ultra-mobile personal computing (umpc.cn and umpc.com.cn), one of the hottest technologies around, fetched an eye-popping 390,000 yuan ($49,000). more

ICANN Settles Feud with UK ccTLD Operator

The company that manages the U.K.'s top-level domain has struck a truce with the U.S.-based organization responsible for overseeing Internet domain names, cooling ongoing disagreements over administrative control of the Internet.

On Friday, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced at a conference in Marrakech, Morocco, that it had exchanged letters with Nominet UK, a sign of future cooperation on managing the name and number system that makes Web browsing possible. more

Nominet Signs Up to ICANN

In a hugely significant move, .uk registry Nominet has signed up to internet overseeing organisation ICANN and put to bed a historic battle between the US not-for-profit company and managers of country-specific internet domains.

The decision to go through with an "exchange of letters" where ICANN recognises Nominet as the owner of the .uk registry and Nominet recognises ICANN as the global technical body of the internet follows a decision by the ICANN Board to give ccTLDs greater autonomy within ICANN. more

Verisign Receives Subpoena Relating to Stock Option Backdating

VeriSign has reported that they are cooperating with a grand jury subpoena and a SEC inquiry into their historical stock option grants. More can be found here. Backdating of options is essentially a fraud against existing shareholders, as noted in the press or simply searching Google for "backdating fraud". Under the existing 2001 .com Registry Agreement, section 16.C would allow for termination of the agreement by ICANN in the event that VeriSign "is convicted by a court of competent jurisdiction of a felony or other serious offense related to financial activities... more

DNSSEC Deployment at the Root

The DNSSEC is a security protocol for providing cryptographic assurance (i.e. using the public key cryptography digital signature technology) to the data retrieved from the DNS distributed database (RFC4033). DNSSEC deployment at the root is said to be subject to politics, but there is seldom detailed discussion about this "DNS root signing" politics. Actually, DNSSEC deployment requires more than signing the DNS root zone data; it also involves secure delegations from the root to the TLDs, and DNSSEC deployment by TLD administrations (I omit other participants involvement as my focus is policy around the DNS root). There is a dose of naivety in the idea of detailing the political aspects of the DNS root, but I volunteer! My perspective is an interested observer. more

ICANN Approves .TEL Top-Level Domain

ICANN unanimously approved the creation of the new .Tel Top Level Domain (TLD) and awarded the contract to Telnic Limited.

"The .Tel domain offers the first genuinely different use of domains since .com was first created. It will provide seamless integration of existing methods of communication with emerging technologies like Voice over IP (VoIP). This places the .Tel domain at the core of the next phase of Internet development," said Khashayar Mahdavi, CEO of Telnic. more

Why Don't GAC Representatives Follow Their Own National Law?

A few weeks ago ICANN's domain name policy making organ (the GNSO) decided that the purpose of Whois was domain name coordination and not compulsory surveillance of domain name registrants. The US and Australian governments expressed their opposition. The US government's lack of concern for privacy is well known. But what about Australia? The Australian ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) representative, Ashley Cross, tried to use his authority as "a government" to intimidate the GNSO, sending it a message announcing that "Australia" supports a broader definition of Whois purpose that gives ICANN a blank check... What does "Australia" really support, however? more

Interesting Facts About Domain Names

During a database testing, Dennis Forbes makes use of the .com zone file as data sample but he also stumbles upon some unexpected domain name discoveries which he has reported on his site. Dennis Forbes explains: "I recently had a need for a mid-sized amount of real-world data, which I required for testing purposes on low-end hardware (testing and demonstrating some of the new functionality of SQL Server 2005). I wanted something that wasn't confidential, which excluded the easy choice of using business data, and I refrain from using artificial data..." more

VeriSign Speaks About the .com Agreement

This is a debate that will make plenty of money for Washington lobbyists for years to come.

But there is less talk about another infrastructure issue that could also have a major effect on the Internet. This issue is whether the .com domain name will remain reliable and secure. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the body that manages the technical aspects of the Internet, has decided to allow the cost of .com domain names to increase by a little less than $2 over the next five years. The additional funds will allow more investment in managing and protecting the .com domain. more

ICANN to Test Non-English TLDs

The Internet's key oversight agency has outlined a plan for testing domain names entirely in non-English characters, bringing closer to reality a change highly sought by Asian and Arabic Internet users.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers announced a tentative timetable Tuesday that calls for tests to begin in the second half of the year. The tests would help ensure that introducing non-English suffixes wouldn't wreck a global addressing system that millions of Internet users rely upon every day. more

ICANN to Launch Testing of IDNs for TLDs in the Third Quarter of 2006

ICANN will start the trial testing of internationalized domain names (IDN) in the Top-Level Domain (TLD) system, in the third quarter of 2006, Paul Twomey, President and CEO of ICANN, told Interfax in an interview Tuesday. Once IDN domain names are implemented Internet sites will able to have domain names in foreign languages, and foreign character sets -- such as Chinese.

"The preparation for the testing is already underway, and it will be a testing on the top of the root," said Twomey. "We are presently moving to introduce the IDNs of TLD, and are much closer to the end for the answer." But the exact date for the launch of the IDN is not yet available.  more

China Adds Chinese Top-Level Domain Names

China's Ministry of Information Industry (MII) has made adjustment to China's Internet domain name system in accordance with Article 6 of China Internet Domain Names Regulations.

After the adjustment, ".MIL" will be added under the top-level domain (TLD) name of "CN". A new Internet domain name system will take effect as of March 1 in China. Under the new system, besides "CN", three Chinese TLD names "CN", "COM" and "NET" are temporarily set. more

VeriSign's Chief Hits Back at .com Critics

VeriSign's chief executive Stratton Sclavos has urged ICANN to quickly approve a deal that would allow the company to raise the price of .com domains, saying those who oppose it are acting out of "narrow economic interests".

The demand, in a letter published yesterday [PDF], came as opposition mounted to the proposal. Those criticizing the deal now include a former ICANN chief executive, and ICANN's At Large Advisory Committee, which represents end users. more

U.S. Congress Pushing for Adult Top-Level Domain

It's rare that Christian conservatives and the pornography industry agree on anything. But a congressional proposal to create a new Internet domain has made odd bedfellows of the two groups.

Some moderate Democrats in Congress are pushing for an Internet red-light district where pornography would be isolated on an ''.xxx'' domain. Conservatives and the adult entertainment industry are fighting the idea -- but for dramatically different reasons. more